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The Leng Pleng Gig Guide comes out on a Thursday or Friday of every week

Weekly Wrap - Commencing Thursday the 8th December 2016

Things continue to bubble up on the Cambodian music scene this week with brand new collaborations and some superb international performers visiting The Kingdom.

Lost in music: Don Camilo. pic : Don Camilo Facebook
Don Camilo last visited Phnom Penh back in April of this year. The Chilean reggae singer was full of good vibes, catchy vocal hooks and neat dance moves at Sharky Bar when he performed there with Papa Dub. This week, Camilo will be reunited with Papa at The Venue (also known as Bob’s Garage) in Sihanoukville on Friday night. The gig will feature an appearance by Cambodian chanteuse Miss Sarawan - showcasing an interesting new Khmer vocal/dub reggae project cooked up by Papa Dub. To make sure the party is fully rocking, Bob Passion and the Mixters band will also be performing a set. Don Camilo will be back on the bus to Phnom Penh on Saturday morning, in preparation for another rocking set of reggae vocals at Alchemy that night. Check out his talents in the video below. 

Kampot City will be rocking on Friday night at the fantastic Banyan Tree venue - house band The Kampot Playboys will be bolstered by an appearance from Tin and R.J. of Phnom Skor, in addition to soulful acoustic duo Simmer. Banyan Tree has been expanded and remodeled since Playboys singer Sok Chiet took over the venue formerly known as Bodhi Villa. The stage, bar, terrace and dance floor areas now hold a much larger capacity of rockers and revellers. The Friday night tradition of expats and backpackers sharing a brew and a boogie is very much still in force.

Back in Phnom Penh, a brace of new bands will be making their debut over the weekend. Blue Lotus is comprised of Seth Khan (guitar & vocals), Gildas Maronneaud (bass guitar) and Peang Kanika (drums and percussion), with Yeang Sok Mean also joining on keyboards. The group have been working up a set of original songs which they will unveil at the Cloud venue on Friday night. Blue Lotus is a hard-rocking and progressive guitar combo with an alternative style and sound - we look forward to checking them out.

Stepping out: Channty Kak. pic - CSP website

Channthy Cha-Cha is a new band from the voice of the Cambodian Space Project - Channty Kak. The singer has brought together group of excellent young Khmer rock musicians (and a self-professed ‘token barang’) to play old favourites together with new original songs and classic Cambodian dancing music. The ‘token barang’ himself, Scott Bywater, told Leng Pleng that ‘the charisma and energy of Channthy shines through, channelling the spirits of her heroes Pen Ron, Tina Turner and Amy Winehouse to re-invent her stage persona as a strong, independent woman with something to say. If you knew and loved her with the CSP, be prepared to be blown away…’

You can catch the very first public performance of Channty Cha-Cha at Oscar’s On The Corner this Saturday night. Channty and Scott will also be making an acoustic appearance on Radio One this Saturday afternoon.

The International Jazz Festival will arrive in Phnom Penh next week, bringing some truly top-drawer players to the city. Yutaka Shiina is a pianist and composer from Japan - playing with his piano trio this Tuesday at Raffles. Check out the video above for a preview. Wednesday sees four of the best young singers in Cambodia take part in ‘Khmer Jazz Experiment’ - a collaboration with four top Phnom Penh-based jazz players - set to take place at Black Box Theater. Black Box, at ISPP campus, is possibly the best-equipped theatre in Cambodia. Finally, on Thursday the 15th, Sara Lazarus will bring her incredible jazz voice to Raffles. Good stuff!

Whatever you're up to over the next few days, stay safe out there and... see you around the traps!

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